California 45-Hour Practicum (Online Classroom)
Unlike our other coursework, this course will be both GUIDED and PACED - in other words, you will be required to complete specific, set assignments as assigned by the practicum instructor. The requirements you will be required to complete will be determined and given to you once you complete a site verification form and identify for us both your worksite and your work supervisor AND the number of actual work experience hours you have at the time you sign up for the course.
This course is a flexible-entry course - you can begin at any time once we have you registered AND once you have submitted your site verification form to us.
Susan Cheatham, M.Ed, completed her graduate and undergraduate work at the University of Southern Mississippi, obtaining a Master’s in Education, with an emphasis on community counseling. She has worked in the substance abuse field for more than 20 years, and is a supervising LPC and certified substance abuse counselor and SAP provider. She has worked with child welfare services providing substance abuse assessments and counseling for their clients. She currently works at a non-profit facility providing individual and family counseling, marital and couples counseling, and with clients who have mood disorders, PTSD, anxiety disorders.
In addition, she has developed the curriculum and program for women who have been arrested for domestic violence and is facilitating five groups for this population. She has developed and implemented a survivor of suicide support group and facilitated crisis debriefing groups in her area. She provides onsite supervision for students in master level programs completing their practicum and internship hours. In addition to this Series on Women's issues, she is the author/instructor for the DLCAS course entitled “Trauma and Substance Abuse.”
Two texts will be required for the course. The first is a book by Corey and Corey, "Becoming a Helper." We will be working out of the fourth edition of this text in order to make it more affordable for students. You can find copies at a variety of locations, including eBay and Amazon.com. Try using this link to Amazon.com - Becoming a Helper, 4th Edition. There were a large number of both new and used copies of this book at some very reasonable prices.
The second is the book "Developing Clinical Skills for Substance Abuse Counseling" by Daniel Yalisove. Again, Amazon.com is one of the places you can order the book, which should run around $45.
PLEASE NOTE: You will need both of these books before you begin the actual online class.
Finding a practicum is much like the job application process - indeed, some students will find positions in the field that will serve as their full-time job as well as their practicum/work experience site. Others may be volunteering their time in order to obtain the necessary training and experience.
Treatment sites vary in types of clients, therapy approaches, supervisors, student requirements, application deadlines and starting dates. The agencies also vary in terms of their application process-most will require a personal interview. Students should familiarize themselves with various agencies and apply to programs which fulfill their training needs and career goals. Students may not have placements in agencies where they would have a supervisory (administrative or clinical) relationship with a friend, relative or former employer.
Students should begin their practicum search as soon as possible. Many agencies can and do hire interns or "counselors-in-training" and are fully prepared to assist those seeking training in obtaining the experiential knowledge that counselors require. However, such positions may be limited and may not be available in all treatment settings, so don't rule out volunteer positions if you find them.
Once verification is received (the form you need will be provided to you once you register for the course) we'll send you instructions and the link for the online classroom, and you'll begin that part of the work. Then, over the course of 20 weeks, you'll receive instruction on becoming a counselor; what the general knowledge, skills, and attitudes are for professionals in the field; and complete assignments that will help prepare you to become a professional in the field AND for the required testing that comes as you advance towards you California credential (you'll take a written and oral exam that are administered by CCAPP and have been developed by the International Certification and Reciprocity Consortium).